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Using Graco Airless Paint Sprayer: The Complete Guide

When talking about paint sprayers, the Graco airless paint sprayer is something entirely mentionable. It has made painting a breeze.

Still, many people do not know the process of using this tool. But hey, I am here to help you.

So, how to use Graco airless paint sprayer?

Firstly, you have to get rid of the storage fluid of the system by draining the system. Secondly, you have to put the valves on the paint bucket. Also, set up the spray gun by adjusting the pressure and switches. Thirdly, you can use the spray gun in a straight line formation and paint your wall!

This information is really important, but not on its own. By reading the entire article, you can make more sense and get a better insight.

Start reading here!

Preparations for the Paintjob

I know you are really excited to use the Graco paint sprayer and paint. But first off, you have to prepare the fern and the paint. Read along to find out how to do those.

Unboxing the Paint Sprayer

The Graco airless paint sprayer does not only contain only the paint sprayer. There are multiple peripherals to this painter!

Unboxing the Graco airless paint sprayer, you will get tons of materials and components. Here is a list of the things you will obtain-

  • Instruction Manual
  • 50 feet hose
  • Spray nozzle
  • Pump armor
  • Magnum project painter plus
  • Outlet hoses

All of these components will come into play whenever you use the Graco airless paint sprayer. In most cases, this paint sprayer is used outside your house.

Accordingly, you have to prepare outdoors before starting the paint job. I’ve elaborated on that in the next segment. Come through to read it.

Prepping the Fern

To prep the fern/space outside your house, you will need some blue duck tapes. Along with that, you will need polyethylene sheets. The size factor of these sheets should be 10 X 10 feet. Then you can cut it to fit your windows.

While you’re doing the measurements, you can fix cracks on the wall. The paint can stick better to a plain wall rather than a cracked one.

After you have the sheets matching the size of your windows, stick them with the tape. Apply the duck tape around the edges of the sheet. That way, it can stick to your wall and protect the windows and door from paint.

Speaking of paint, you’ve got to prep the paint too! I’ve discussed the process of preparing paint below, check it out!

Prepping the Paint 

Before prepping the paint, make sure to put on rubber gloves and a mask. Safety first, always! 

To prepare the paint for the sprayer, getting the ratio right is crucial. The process is also different for water-based paint and oil-based paint.

For water-based paint, for every gallon of paint, add half a cup of water. A half cup is approximately 118mL of water.

After mixing, you can check the thickness using a plastic funnel. If the paint flows easily through the funnel, you are good to go. But if it’s not flowing easy, keep adding milliliters of water until it’s thin. 

Similarly, you can use mineral spirits to thin out oil-based paint. The process is similar but the ratio is different. Strain both of the paints after preparing them. 

You are now done with all the preps. Without further ado, let’s just into the procedure of using the Graco airless paint sprayer outside.

How to Use Graco Airless Paint Sprayer?

Let’s learn how to use this magnificent airless paint sprayer. I have provided extra detailed guidelines for you below. Keep on reading.

Utilizing Procedure

Before using the paint sprayer, you need to flush the entire system. The magnum project painter plus needs to be flushed thoroughly to start operating. This will help get rid of the storage fluid inside it.

To flush the system, plug it into an outlet with a ground. Then, take the suction part of the system and submerge it in a bucket of water. After that, put the drain part on an empty bucket.

Use water if you are going to use water-based paint. Use mineral spirits instead of water, when you will use oil-based paint. You do textures using a spray gun with both of these paints, so don’t worry.

Then, put the “C” switch up and turn the system on. Basically, the water from the bucket will fill up inside the system. Then, it will also drain the entire water.

Through this process, the storage fluid can be easily gotten rid of. Since the suction and drainage pipes are transparent, you can monitor and supervise the whole process. 

You need to let the system run for 30-60 seconds to ensure proper draining. After that, turn it off. Keep the switch still on.

Dump the paint you prepared before into an empty bucket. Then, put the suction valve in it. Turn on the system and see if the paint comes up through the suction valve. If the paint does come up, you need to do 2 things.

Firstly, turn off the ‘C’ switch. That will put the system to spray mode and turn off prime mode. 

Secondly, adjust the pressure using the knob beside the prime switch. This adjustment is totally your choice. Yet, about 70-80% pressure is good for the paint sprayer.

Now you can start painting using the airless paint sprayer. Have the nozzle horizontal. 

Start spraying from up top to bottom and overlap by 50% on each strip. 

It is always better to do 2 coats than 1 heavy coat. Note that it will be similar to the procedure of skim coating walls

Keep the spray gun in a straight line when you’re pulling it down. Also, the angle of the gun should be vertical to the wall. Failure to maintain this angle will result in uneven patterns in your paint job! 

While painting, if you inspect any gaps on the strip edges, turn the pressure up. Apply adequate pressure on the trigger of the spray gun and keep painting. 

After you are done painting, give it 10-15 minutes to dry out fully. After that, you can remove the polyethylene sheets. Be careful while removing the tapes, do not put too much pressure while removing them. 

Cleanup Procedure

Now it is time to clean up. Firstly, take the suction valve out of the paint and put it into a bucket with a little bit of water. Then, take the filter of the suction valve off. 

We will be using the fastest method to clean up pipes. Using a garden hose, you can clean off the suction valve quickly! 

Attach the adapter with the garden hose and attach the suction valve with the adapter. After that, run the system again.

Until the suction valve is clean, keep on running the system. Then, detach the spray gun from the hose. This way, the water can come out of the hose. 

So when you turn on the system, instead of spraying water, it will output streaming water. 

The hose can get cleaned using this method. That is how you can clean all the hoses of the entire system. You can use the residue water you have around to save water costs. That’s how to clean all the pipes of the Graco system.

There might be cases where you have over-sprayed with the Graco airless gun. In that case, removing the paint from the over-sprayed part is necessary. 

I’ll guide you through the paint removal process now.

How to Remove the Spray Paint?

The procedure associated with removing spray paint is easy. It is a bit different for oil-based and water-based paints. Still, for your convenience, I have mentioned both of the procedures below. Give it a good read. 

Removing Oil-based Paint

Here are the steps for removing oil-based paint-

  • Firstly, put on rubber gloves and get some painter’s rag and some paint thinner.
  • Secondly, moisten the painter’s rag with the paint thinner and rub the oil-based paint.
  • After the rag catches the dissolving paint, you will need to clean it. Use some thinner to clean the paint off the rag as well. After cleaning, start rubbing the oil-based paint again.
  • Repeat this process until all the oil-based paint is removed. If you have used the Graco airless sprayer, the area should be small. It should not take much time to remove it.

After the removal of the paint, dry the area by wiping it with a dry painter’s rag. It will absorb all the excess paint thinner left on the wall!

Removing Water-based Paint

Here are the steps for removing water-based paint-

  • To start off, fill up a bucket with water. If you can, fill it up with warm water. Warm weather is always better for cleaning. Add a bit of soap to the bucket as well.
  • Then, keep agitating the water until you see suds forming.
  • After that, take a soft cloth and dip it in the hot water. From there you can clean off the areas you over-sprayed using the Graco sprayer. Just rub the cloth gently on the area.

    Refrain from substituting the soft cloth with any scrubber. The scrubbers might damage the walls!
  • Inspect the wall after rubbing. If the paint is not there, rinse it off with some clean water and let it dry. If there’s a residue of paint, try using a magic eraser to remove them.

    For your convenience, here are some top-tier suggestions for magic erasers-
Product 1
Product 2

By using any of these erasers, the paint will be gone in a jiffy.

  • Alternatively, you can try using some nail polish remover instead of soap water. Acetone really helps remove the spray paint!

Remember, the sooner you act on removing the paint, the better. If the paint has had a chance to dry, it’ll take a long time to remove. This goes for both paints. Act quickly!


What to add to the paint to make it thinner?

You can use mineral spirits and turpentine to thin out your paint. There is a ratio you have to maintain though. For any three parts of paint, add one part of mineral spirit/turpentine and mix it. Wooden sticks are good for mixing. You can use ice cream sticks if you want. Finally, use a brush to paint! 

What is a natural paint remover?

The mixture of boiling water and baking soda is considered the best natural paint remover. Baking soda is a very effective tool for cleaning. Additionally, adding boiling water to it only makes it better. Since a boiling water heater does not affect metal, it’s a brilliant way for removing paint.

Does hydrogen peroxide take off paint?

Yes, hydrogen peroxide can effectively take off the paint. This chemical substance is also used as a nail polish remover. Applying some hydrogen peroxide and gently rubbing an area can take the paint off. Remember to wear gloves when working and work in a well-vented room. That way, you can avoid the fumes.

The Final Words 

You have reached the end of this article. I sincerely hope that now you know how to use Graco airless paint sprayer

If you want the paint to be long-lasting, take your time while painting. Slowly painting improves its quality. 

Wishing you all the best!